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    Coronavirus: Stay Informed

    What we’re doing for customers and patients affected by COVID-19 and how you can stay safe

    If you are experiencing a medical emergency, respiratory or otherwise, please call your country’s emergency phone number or doctor immediately. Be sure to tell them of any exposure you may have had to COVID-19

    If you are a healthcare professional, please click here


    Message from our CEO Mick Farrell

    As a global leader in respiratory medicine, ResMed stands with the world in the face of the latest coronavirus disease COVID-19 and is ready to help mitigate its effects, helping people breathe while their immune system fights this virus. More than 7,500 ResMedians are working in over 140 countries for this purpose. We are working with governments, health authorities, hospitals, physicians, and patients worldwide to assess their needs, and to deliver the ventilation therapy that is essential to treat the respiratory complications of COVID-19. Our primary focus is to maximize the availability of ResMed ventilators and other respiratory support devices for the patients that need them most.

    As global leaders in digital health, we’re proud that many of our ventilators and bilevel respiratory devices are cloud-connected, enabling physicians and respiratory specialists to remotely monitor their patients. There could not be a clearer case for the use of digital health and remote monitoring of patients than this current crisis with a virus that is so contagious stemming from direct human contact.

    I’m grateful to our global team for working through today’s challenges to help treat an increasing number of COVID-19 patients. I’d like to call out first-responder ResMedians in China’s Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, in particular one ResMed hero who, since early January, has donned a positive pressure hazmat suit, and helped set up thousands of people on ResMed ventilators and ResMed masks. There are also 100-plus ResMedians from Malaysia who in mid-March volunteered to keep working in our Singapore manufacturing plant when Malaysia closed its borders, relocating to live near our plant in Singapore, spending weeks away from their families, so they can continue to produce as many lifesaving ventilators and ventilation masks as possible.

    ResMed is taking every measure possible worldwide to maximize the production of ventilators, masks, and other respiratory devices. We are looking to double or triple the output of ventilators, and scale up ventilation mask production more than tenfold. Our team is also taking precautions such as a work-from-home policy for all employees who can do that, social distancing, and ensuring world-class quality, safety, good manufacturing practices, and top-level hygiene procedures at our manufacturing, service, and distribution centers to help ensure quality, safety, and business continuity.

    Below you’ll find answers to frequently asked questions about ResMed products and links to leading advice from experts on health and safety. This information is changing rapidly; we encourage you to check back regularly for updates.

    I urge all of us to do our part to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus, whether that is self-quarantining, working from home, sheltering in place, or just staying healthy for our families, particularly the elderly and those with compromised immune systems.

    Let me close with this: I would like to personally thank the front-line clinical heroes – many thousands of respiratory therapists, respiratory nurses, pulmonary and critical care medicine physicians, as well as hospital and clinical staff who set up our ventilators and masks for patients in need and deliver the lifesaving gift of breath... You are the superheroes of this COVID-19 crisis, and we salute you!

    Best,
    Mick

    For your safety

    If you are experiencing a medical emergency, respiratory or otherwise, please call your country’s emergency phone number or doctor immediately. Be sure to tell them of any exposure you may have had to COVID-19.

    To reduce your risk of contracting and/or spreading COVID-19, please follow these published guidelines for:

    • Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 (including how it’s transmitted, common symptoms, and how we can best avoid it): World Health Organization (WHO)
    • People at risk for serious illness from COVID-19: U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
    • Common myths vs. facts about COVID-19: WHO
    • Healthy hygiene: WHO
    • Tips for health workers: WHO
    • Rights, roles, and responsibilities of health workers, including key considerations for occupational safety and health: WHO

    Frequently asked questions about ResMed respiratory devices used for COVID-19

    Based on the latest information we’ve gathered, here is the latest guidance on ResMed devices related to COVID-19:

    CPAP devices are designed to provide only PAP (positive airway pressure) and would require significant rework in order to function as a ventilator. Learn more about our bilevel and ventilation products here.If you or someone you know is having difficulty breathing or other respiratory issues, please contact your doctor or healthcare provider immediately.

    ResMed does not modify single-purpose CPAP devices that are commonly used in the home to treat sleep apnea. For more information on ResMed’s position on modifications to CPAP machines,read here.

    ResMed manufactures a range of ventilators and bilevel devices; both are indicated for home and hospital use, and have the flexibility for use in various clinical scenarios to support patients with respiratory insufficiency and failure. Our ventilators can provide invasive or non-invasive ventilation:

    • Noninvasive ventilation (NIV) is a form of mechanical ventilation where air is delivered to the patient through a mask or mouthpiece.
    • Invasive ventilation is used when sufficient ventilation cannot be achieved using non-invasive methods; air is delivered through a tube inserted into the trachea either by intubation or tracheotomy.
    • Bilevel devices are non-invasive only and deliver two distinct pressures, one for inhalation and the second for exhalation; the change in pressures leads to flow of air in and out of the lungs.

    If you have been tested and diagnosed with COVID-19, you need to follow the recommendation of the medical staff that provided the diagnosis. At ResMed, we only sell our ventilation devices through the healthcare system of each country. The therapy required to treat the worst cases of COVID-19 is very complex and requires medical expertise and clinically trained staff to administer it. Your medical professional has the expertise to decide what kind of therapy is required for each patient.

    Information is changing daily, but the latest we’ve seen suggests that:

    • Invasive ventilation carries a lower risk of spreading COVID-19 through aerosolization or droplet dispersion (exhaling air particles that have a contagion) because air exits through a tube just as it came into the patient.
    • Non-invasive ventilation, Evidence suggests that non-invasive ventilation procedures are more likely to produce large droplets (>10 μm) rather than aerosols, and that these are largely confined to within one meter due to their large mass. This suggests that the risk of droplet dispersion as a result of using non-invasive ventilation or bilevel devices may not be that different to that of any COVID-19 patient in the hospital who is coughing or sneezing. Additionally, non-invasive ventilation systems with a good interface fitting do not create widespread dispersion of exhaled air, according to an experts’ panel cited by the U.S. National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). Recommendations have been published to support good mask fit to reduce aerosols, including the use of full face masks. Nonetheless, the risk of aerosol dispersion needs to be mitigated with appropriate isolation of patients and the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers, such as N95 masks/respirators and eye protection, which are standard protective equipment in a COVID-19 ICU.

    For each ResMed device, cleaning and disinfection procedures are provided in the device’s associated clinical guide, user guide, or service manual.

    There is little information available on reprocessing requirements for equipment used in treating COVID-19 patients. The following information is based on research that has been conducted on similar viruses, and some limited data on COVID-19.

    Published guidance from health authorities reinforces the need to maintain standard cleaning and disinfection procedures. To prevent cross-contamination, antibacterial filters are used on air intake and breathing tubes, and tube accessories are replaced or sterilized by the staff in the care setting. Instructions are provided on the materials and method for cleaning surfaces. Surface disinfection procedures with 62–71% ethanol, 0.5% hydrogen peroxide, or 0.1% sodium hypochlorite have been shown to reduce SARS coronavirus infectivity within one minute.

    Frequently asked questions about ResMed devices used for existing sleep/respiratory conditions

    Based on the latest information we’ve gathered, here is the latest guidance on sleep/respiratory conditions related to COVID-19:

    CPAP devices are designed to provide only PAP (positive airway pressure) and would require significant rework in order to function as a ventilator. Learn more about our bilevel and ventilation products here. If you or someone you know is having difficulty breathing or other respiratory issues, please contact your doctor or healthcare provider immediately.

    ResMed does not modify single-purpose CPAP devices that are commonly used in the home to treat sleep apnea. For more information on ResMed’s position on modifications to CPAP machines, read here.

    A CPAP machine is an effective therapy device for treating sleep apnea. CPAP use doesn’t prevent you from contracting COVID-19. Please refer to your national healthcare authority or your medical professional for more information about COVID-19 and its contamination prevention.

    Coronavirus doesn’t change your sleep apnea diagnosis – or your need to continue using CPAP therapy. You should continue to use your CPAP machine because a full night’s sleep benefits your overall health. If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, you need to follow the medical advice from your healthcare provider.

    In the event of COVID-19 diagnosis, read the American Thoracic Society’s tips on daily mask cleaning. Their informational guide includes additional information and resources on COVID-19 diagnosis and PAP therapy usage. Please refer to your specific ResMed User Guide for specific step-by-step instructions on cleaning your device and mask.

     

    The latest information says non-invasive ventilation (delivered by a mask with air diffusers) has a low risk of aerosolization, provided that there’s a good mask fit, patient isolation, and PPE for care providers. See more via the American Academy of Sleep Medicine: Coronavirus FAQs: CPAP tips for sleep apnea patients.

    As stated in our clinical and user guides, *optimal* humidifier performance requires distilled water. That’s because most or all of its minerals have been removed, preventing mineral buildup in the humidifier tub. That said, tap or bottled water may also be used. It will not harm the device or pose a risk to patients. It will, however, require more rigorous humidifier cleaning to prevent excess mineral buildup in the tub.

    Recommendations on disinfection processes for our therapy devices have been provided to your healthcare professionals.

    Yes. ResMed already has strict safety protocols for handling returned medical equipment. We follow those protocols to safely receive, repair, and dispose of returned equipment if necessary. Please contact your home medical equipment provider or health care professional if you have a concern about your device, mask, or accessory.

    If you are being treated for COVID-19, you should share with your doctor or clinical team your pre-existing conditions and what devices you are already using and follow their advice. As described by the World Health Organization, the key risk for spreading COVID-19 is person-to-person transmission in close contact. The most important advice in controlling the spread of COVID-19 is washing your hands, good hygiene, and social distancing. Maintaining the cleanliness of your ResMed device according to the user guide is always a good practice to reduce infection risk to anyone else from any contaminated surfaces.

    Your CPAP device has been prescribed for personal use only and cannot be used by more than one person without following a disinfection protocol set forth in our user guide. A CPAP machine is used to treat sleep apnea.

    A CPAP machine is only intended to treat sleep apnea.

    You are not at higher risk of catching COVID-19 if you use a CPAP device. Please ask your medical professional for more specific information on your concern.

    Disinfection processes have been provided to your healthcare professional.

    If you wish to clean your CPAP machine, the device’s user guide explains how to clean it on a weekly basis. For detailed instructions on how to clean your mask and tubing, please refer to the device’s user guide, and the following steps:

    1. Wash the air tubing in warm water using mild detergent and hot water. Do not wash in a dishwasher or washing machine.
    2. Rinse the air tubing thoroughly and allow to dry out of direct sunlight and/or heat.
    3. Wipe the exterior of the device with a dry cloth.

    The following video may be helpful. Click here for more videos on how to clean your masks.

    Please note: Cleaning any device or mask in the manner recommended in the product’s user guide does not guarantee decontamination or disinfection. For more information, contact your healthcare professional.

    Yes, all Chinese-made components for ResMed products are safe for use, and all components received at a ResMed manufacturing facility go through rigorous safety, cleanliness, and quality checks before manufacturing – processes designed to safeguard against such health threats as COVID-19.